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Monday, August 31, 2020

Bankruptcy and Divorce Proceedings..Potential Problems

Since bankruptcy is federal law, the main differences for cases would involve the state laws likely tied to exemptions, the amounts, and the ability to file without jeopardizing the community division in California.  Also some civil law issues may come into play in divorces.

Since not all family law attorneys have practiced bankruptcy, it should be known that bankruptcy is considered not only legally complex, but technically as well.  It rivals the USA Tax Code, and it is routinely changing as well. Debt can be categorized as secured, unsecured or partially one or the other, and a means test is required at the outset just to see if one is qualified to file at all, in theory.
If the hurdle is passed, there are many other considerations, such as the dates of payments, property actually owned or not owned, and countless other questions.  The typical paperwork in a Chapter 7 liquidation is now running about 100 pages (the same filing documents are used, with possible additions, depending on circumstances.)  A Chapter 13 case (repayment plan) may be something that is filed after a Chapter 7 is completed, or it can be filed alone, depending on the debtor's circumstances.
In some instances a Chapter 13 may be the only viable thing available to save a property from foreclosure. Clients that enter into a bankruptcy (separately or together) and do NOT inform their attorneys BEFOREHAND--are plausibly creating huge legal problems for the entire case, as bankruptcy rules have fairly strict procedures, and failing to let the civil court know what you are doing ahead of time is a huge issue, since what one does in bankruptcy court can have huge ramifications down the line in certain instances. Lack of knowledge in this area means you could be in big trouble if you ignore this?

Attorney has first hand knowledge of these scenarios within divorce litigation, including the law and motion hearings in federal court.  Some spouses misuse or attempt to misuse the process to get out of paying support. Rest assured, all support is considered a priority debt and will not be affected adversely unless there is wrongdoing by the non filing party. In fact, attorney fees spent for spousal support in bankruptcy should be claimed in the divorce.  There are so many situations that can either affect, conflict, or ruin a bankruptcy filing that listing them here would not be prudent.  However, the fact that parties in a divorce may face bankruptcy filing while in the divorce, is somewhat dangerous.

All bankruptcy filings are normally public record. The location makes no difference if it is in the USA for the most part. You can access PACER online if you sign up for an account and it is free but you must pay for the copies you make, normally quarterly. If a spouse finds that their other half has filed bankruptcy without notifying them, they should inform their attorney immediately. Attorney has seen a case where the wife racked up over $100,000 of unsecured debt without the husband knowing it; then when he found out, the community property house was stuck in the Chapter 13 they filed.

Further, the wife left the husband and not only kept the house, she got rid of all the debt and likely kept her pension, and she earned about 3 times what he earned yearly.   Attorney refused to settle the case on the unbelievable grounds just stated,  but the husband cracked under pressure and succumbed to family pressure-- but only after attorney forced client to terminate her as attorney.  Attorney does not knowingly allow clients to lose most of their savings, the house, and credit, simply because someone can get away with it.
That was one of the worst cases ever seen, there was no even division of property or anything else actually. The husband just walked away with very little, and had no problem for another attorney helping him draft the deal. Attorney finds such an uneven split (while under emotional upheaval) to be both wrong, and rather oppressive, and would never agree to help a client execute something like that. 

Divorce Lawyer - Chico, CA l Family Law

C, Chan is both experienced and a tough representative for those that want to
win their cases, focused primarily on litigation
Chico Family Law Attorney C. Chan 530.359.8810 ... Win Your Case! ..... Not all Family Law attorneys know Bankruptcy law or its ramifications down the line.

Chico, California Family Lawyers. Claimed Lawyer ProfileSocial Media. . Carolyn J. Chan. Chico, CA Family Law Attorney with 27 years experience.

Parents, Marijuana Use and Custody in California

Could you lose custody of your children due to smoking marijuana?

[This post has over 1,851 views so apparently parents are concerned!]

Most county employed mediators have standard provisions that parents should adhere from smoking in presence of children, or sometimes even when the kids are under the control of that specific parent.
Further, even if smoking is allowed in certain areas, many mediators don't want kids near second hand smoke, period. EVEN if it's inside the house in another room...EVEN if it's anywhere near where the kids might be, play, or access? Like outside?
     **Note: in one mediation case, a mediator told a client that because MJ smoking is legal, to drop the issue...quite frankly, the actual smoking or use of the drug (even where legal) is not necessarily proper inside, where kids are, or in cars and other certain places? or where kids have any type of respiratory issue/other ailments? In any event, despite the mediator, it is NOT a good idea for MJ to be used around kids, period. Don't care if it's legal. It doesn't necessarily help your case.

The "smoking" will generally cover most forms of tobacco and possibly edibles.... (cigar, cigarette, vape, medical MJ, etc...)  And many times, smoking by third parties in the home may not be a good idea due to secondhand smoke. VAPING is almost worst because it is becoming well known, that the nicotine involved, is fused with scents (i.e. cherry,etc) that the teens are running to buy/try?   https://vaping360.com/how-old-to-vape/

In Butte County, a jury has previously returned a guilty verdict over an issue of whether medical marijuana is a defense (to child endangerment charges)--- the long contested case of  Daisy Bram, where allegedly, the lesser count of misdemeanor child endangerment was found (as opposed to child endangerment likely to cause great bodily harm)... Judge Glusman ruled that no valid evidence was presented as to the certified use of medicinal marijuana and thus it was not available as a defense. Ms. Bram was not represented by counsel, which obviously hindered her defense.


Child Endangerment in California...

Under Penal Code section 273a  there is a possibility of criminal prosecution whenever a child is under your care or custody and you:
  • Willfully permit the child to suffer;
  • Inflict unjustifiable physical or mental pain upon any child; or
  • Willfully endanger the health of a child.
If the prosecuting agency in your county believes that you are “endangering the health of your child” by smoking marijuana or growing it in a home where your children reside, you may face criminal charges....

These charges may be filed as a misdemeanor or as a felony. Of course, if the court order stated that any type of smoking or use of same is not allowed while child is under your care, a violation might be a contempt charge potentially, if the other spouse or another was to bring that claim forward?
If convicted of felony child endangerment, you could be sentenced to up to six years in prison and ordered to pay a maximum $10,000 fine. A misdemeanor conviction is punishable by up to one year in county jail, up to a $1,000 fine, or both.

Why is Alcohol Allowed But Not MJ?

Generally, no courts like the idea of alcohol, tobacco, marijuana, edibles, cigarettes, cigars, etc. when it comes to kids. Although there are tons of rules regarding drunk driving, there are not tons of rules for intoxication at home due to getting high on drugs, including legal marijuana and the like. While the hearsay out there is that MJ will be used, consumed and grown by large business, including beer companies, and that the feds will be changing those laws, it is a possibility, but we wouldn't bet your life on it happening super soon. The banks and other super duty corporations always want to benefit themselves first. BUT if they manage to do it, we can be assured that they will have already thought of safer ways to tone down common marijuana so that it would be as common as alcohol, and treated closer to the way alcohol is regulated.

OTOH, the presence of nicotine in the vaping formulas which are targeting teens (and apparently succeeding)-- is something that relies on curiosity and being popular, because "everyone" is trying it. However one is supposed to be 21 to be "vaping"....well, we are sure that plenty of people are ignoring that there law?? LOL
Parents that are smoking or vaping, your kids are watching you.

Note:  //The courts generally do not favor the smoking of MJ, even if it is medically prescribed. People with chronic anxiety often resort to marijuana use, or prescription meds. The meds only do so much, the overly anxious client will still be overly anxious, but somewhat better than with no meds at all.//
NOTE: JUST BECAUSE MARIJUANA HAS BEEN LEGALIZED TO SOME EXTENT, DOES NOT MEAN THAT OTHER MEANS OF USING MJ ARE LEGAL; FOR EXAMPLE, "SHATTER" IS NOT LEGAL? Using a huge commercial sized bong to ingest shatter is not legal? and certainly doing it with minor children in home is simply insane?  It becomes expensive to prove that one parent is an addict, especially on drugs which can be legal. Obviously that is due to fact that the parent who formerly witnessed such actions, is not living in home where it is presently being done?

https://www.childrenscolorado.org/conditions-and-advice/marijuana-what-parents-need-to-know/safety/  [Extremely informative...]  *Includes Signs of Accidental Exposure to Edibles

https://buttecountyfamilylawlawyer.blogspot.com/  Another site by attorney C. Chan

What Type of Attorney do You Really Need? Do You Want to Win? You Don't Care ... Affordable Family Law Cases, Is it Possible? Our NEW Maverick Paralegal ...

2018 DV Case out of Sacramento CA--in Female's Favor

Please bear with us---before we get to the published case from Sacramento, which was not our case, but shows what we often talk about,  all litigants could use the case statewide if it was appropriate to their own cases in their law and motion pleadings.

WOO HOO!! Just won another DV in an unusual case (not in Butte County, but about 90 miles from here..) where the female had two pets in her custody and got sued for having them by the ex male live in partner------who lives at other end of the USA...

We helped her file the DV as she had prior DV case in another state, and asked that pets be under the protection order. Despite our doubts, the Court awarded her the order for 5 years (not 3) and she thus has DV protection as to the pets.
Meanwhile, the ex was actually suing to gain something out of the pets, there is nothing to gain actually. And even though he hired a very well known  "animal law attorney" from another state, all we can say is, good luck on that one.

 They might as well have flushed that case down the toilet. (Attorney herein does animal law and for longer than most attorneys that know animal law...)

Second DV case-- just settled another DV case!! It does happen from time to time!!! [If we did not settle we would have won the case anyway...facts were in our favor....]

Below is a published case from Sacramento involving domestic violence.


....[D]uring a child custody hearing a year later in June 2012, Judge Kevin Culhane found that Mr. Riley still failed to comprehend the nature and gravity of his conduct. According to Judge Culhane, Riley involved a number of third parties, including his family members, in private parenting issues.

 The court found that Riley was the source of threatening e-mails Rybolt received from Riley’s sister and that his family members had followed her and copied private parenting documents.

 “Such controlling and intrusive conduct,” in the court’s view, “[wa]s fundamentally inconsistent with any finding that the [Family Code section 3044]6 presumption ha[d] been rebutted.”

Image result for domestic violence photos

(the photo above is not the victim, this is photoshop)

[J]udge Culhane further found that, “[m]ost fundamentally the evidence demonstrates an ongoing course of conduct whereby father attempts to blame multiple third parties, includ[ing] mother, mother[’]s boyfriend, other parties, the co-parent counselor, the former lawyer, mediator, and others for the continuance of father[’]s own activities.” Riley had also “drawn the child into these disputes on a number of occasions.”

*[[for some reason, this particular post has a large number of people reading it.]]

This case is indicative that the courts are not wavering on protecting domestic violence victims.  It is in the DV victim's best interest to obtain a litigator that can best protect those rights.  If you need help, call today. Waiting can ruin your case as has been seen in the past for those who do not listen to good advice. Remember, if there is good California law that seems to legally be on your side such as found in published cases, you should inquire either of an attorney or someone that knows legal pleadings to see how to use it for your case. It shouldn't be necessary but that's what the cases are published for--so that laws which are in place, are followed; and if the COURT doesn't follow the law, then appeals are filed. Appeals are very, very, very expensive--therefore it's in your best
interests to get it all worked out at the lower court.

Friday, August 28, 2020

Is Your Family LegaI Issue Listed Below?

Although the Jerry Springer show on TV  is exaggerated, it pretty much sums up the general family law nature of the bad cases that we will see.

https://tinyurl.com/ydg6z52f    (to view business with reviews/other posts)


           If your issue is not listed below, call 

                     Attorney C. Chan                                      ….  (530) 359-8810


Community Property that Spouse Claims isn’t Community
Contempt of court- Can you get a free attorney?

Credits:  Do you have any coming to you or will you Pay Out?
Child Support — who really gets screwed over?

Civil Harassment Restraining Orders
Child Illegally moved out of the state?

DCSS (Dept. Child Support Services) When is it a good idea?
Denied Visitation?

Supervised Visits Required?
DNA Testing–Should you bother and is there a good reason?

Division of Business Assets or Business
Division of Non-Listed Property that One Spouse Lied About

Divorce on Paper
Divorce with Property Issues

Domestic Violence, Including TRO DV or CPO or Criminal issues
Ex Parte Restraining Orders –Do you need or should you get?

Fathers Who are Getting Shafted or Run Over
Fathers who are doing OK but Mother claims not the case
Fighting Over Visitation–percentages and calculation

Forensics–Do you need an actual expert on the business?
Forensic Accounting–Do you need it because your spouse has lied?

Guardianship [Attorney does not do dependency or guardianship cases]

Imputing Income when You don’t even have a job
Income–Do you have a regular wage or self employed–does it matter?

Legal and Physical Custody–Do I really need to know?
Military Problems Including Orders, Not Paying, Arrears

Mothers Who are Overbearing..or Fathers!
Mothers Who Do Too Little but Claim They are Wonderful, but Are not! 
Fathers who claim they do Everything but the kids are ruined?

Medical conditions of one parent– does it mean you can’t have visitation?

Medical Issues– is your child already a special needs child?

Move Away and Why You Might and Might Not Win–advance preparation required

Medications–can you alone force kids to NOT take them?
Mediation  (good, bad, ugly) a lot of it is ugly—yes

Parentage– When is it too late once you are on the hook as the Presumed Father?

Parents on Drugs- Illegal Drugs–or even legal drugs
Parents with  Over Consumption of Alcohol

Parents driving the kids while drinking heavily
Parent(s) passed out in public place, CPS takes kids

Parents on Anti-anxiety Drugs, Marijuana, or Others–Can it affect YOUR timeshare?

Parents with Criminal record charges, arrests, DV TRO backgrounds?
Personal Property– Was it already yours but spouse says NO?
Private Mediation--Is it worth it?

New Boyfriend or Girlfriend Issues
Ongoing spousal support vs temporary—big difference!!

Failing to plan for spousal support ramifications in future
Parental Alienation over Kids, new wife issues

Paying for Kids that are not Your kids?
Real Estate Separate Property When Under Water—-HUGE ISSUE !!!!

School issues—bullying, intimidation, physical harm

Teacher at grade school– issues with proper teacher conduct
Separate Property– Is it Really Separate or is it just Commingled?

Spousal support –are you entitled?
Title to Property–is it Disputed, Proven, or Subject to Division?

Timeshare– Do you really Want more time, or just want to pay Less?

Unsafe Daycare
Visitation–do you need more time or less?

Welfare– Does the other parent get it and how it affects your payments?

Working Under the Table– Can you prove it?
Winning your case—– Do you want to and why?

Win Your Case

To win each case, each set of facts will be different in nearly every case, however the laws that apply will likely be the same ones, since most of what we do is governed by the CA Family Code and other codes that could come up (drugs, animals, criminals,driving,stalking,etc.) 
Attorney has been involved over the years with family law cases in large cities, even when working part time. There is very little that attorney has not seen; she has been on TV, in newspapers, and in the news years ago for different cases. Most people want an affordable attorney, which is hard to find. Ms. Chan is likely the most affordable in the county, with the highest win rate, especially in the law and motion hearings and the domestic violence cases.
Many cases in family law whether they are in Northern Cal or Southern Cal, should be reasonably the same, the local courts may have their own local rules but basically the CA Family Law Code statewide does apply. Generally, law and motion calendars are about 15-20 minutes and then in some counties long cause case cases are considered “trial.” Trial can be half a day, full day, or many days....

The Beginning of the End

It’s Never Easy…………….

We saw the above quote thrown in with a bunch of quotes by women who advertise for divorce parties, divorce cakes, and the like. But unfortunately, it is obvious that the quote was likely written by a male and not a female?


.....UNFORTUNATELY FROM  ATTORNEY'S EXPERIENCE, IT'S NOT THAT FAR OFF, ESPECIALLY IF WE ARE WORKING WITH ANXIETY PRONE PEOPLE....... and yes, such anxiety can arise from most family law issues....

Thursday, August 20, 2020


In family law, attorney gets a ton of questions all of the time, and in most cases can answer 99%
of all of the questions. Occasionally, some clients want counsel to tell them what to do on their
cases, and in many instances, the clients are not disclosing all of the facts. 

By failing to tell an attorney all of the facts, it can sometimes create more problems, because if attorney had KNOWN those facts, it might not only save you some time, money and energy, but a lot of emotional grief that you would not have had to go through?

Attorney has worked on various types of litigation, including family, criminal, civil, bankruptcy, administrative law; below are cases that were published in the media,and/or online, and the administrative case is still precedent with the SPB of California:  

  • Family law case;  terrible family law case involving molestation of children [in news Sacramento Union newspaper, the father lost all custody rights, all identities changed, mid 1990's..]  

  • Criminal case, [i.e. gang related case Oroville, CA in Butte County news, 2011, representing the alleged shooter, no one was killed...]   

  • Criminal post-seizure hearing under CA PC; client's animals illegally seized without a warrant, and apparently no exigent circumstances; at the hearing, attorney was able to prove there was admittedly no exigent circumstances, and therefore a warrant should have been used.  This was in Hollywood, CA, which is a real blow to animal activists, because it has not likely ever been done before (Hollywood is very very political, as one might imagine....)   

  • Civil case, school related case in news, child finding razor blades on school property, Sacramento, about 7 years ago

  • Civil case related to death of son allegedly by the father, 7 years ago, 
  • https://www.leagle.com/decision/incaco20130205030 
  • after criminal case was over, widespread news; published in Verdict Search;     

  • Civil case related to mistreatment of some of the cats used in cat food commercials (the white Persians); case was moved to central CA and eventually lawsuit was dropped.   
  • Sexual harassment at State of CA agency, defended alleged "harasser", he was determined, via CA State Personnel Board of CA, to be innocent of the charge; all negative pay loss reimbursed,  and detrimental records removed from his permanent file; Case was published within State Personnel Board as guiding case law and is still good administrative case law.....

  • Civil case involving Nor Cal lobbyist being charged with alleged fraud in Los Angeles; attorney defended the lobbyist against the charges, resulting in all charges being dismissed; lobbyist was formerly helping animal owners assert their rights against key legislation being pushed by errant animal rights groups...
  • See    Bankruptcy cases  [animal law case from Lassen County, worldwide news, on Google 39 pages, CA state and Eastern District Federal Court involving real estate, fraud, misuse of animal rescue funds, resulting in animal rescuer losing everything,including non profit status including land  that was being used for free/far more...https://www.villagelife.com/news/grace-foundations-sues-banks-for-20-million/
  •      The non profit was sued later by the main bank attorney from So Cal ...attorney represented original owner of horses seized by non profit and animal control; there was also a huge real estate legal issue involved...attorney worked for almost three years on this very, very difficult case...

Attorney herein works cases on family issues differently than most attorneys, and the main reason for this is because attorney does not follow the typical format of plug in the boxes on forms, and get a hearing, set the support, divide everything and go home. In most cases attorney sees (whether hired or not), most clients do not have simple, easy to do cases. Most of the cases are not fill in the forms and go home or settling type of cases at all.

Many of the cases are fraught with DV TRO issues, potential fraud, over the top past litigation that went on for years but accomplished nothing, cases involving inappropriate online reveals of personal facts [which is illegal in most cases, obviously], cases where the simplest of facts turned into nightmares, issues which could have been solved were instead,  simply amplified over and over and over, cases where kids needed help and NEVER got that help?

Situations where one parent is clearly a drug addict and even the mediators ignored it? Cases where a child is being damaged both mentally and physically, and the other side (rather than admitting it) attempts to keep it hidden (in order to keep custody?!) Cases involving informants so that the truth can never move forward?  and if criminal informants are involved, for sure you won't be getting anywhere......

Situations where one parent simply lied 100% of the time, then took advantage of the other parent, charged up almost $100,000 on credit cards, then took off with some other man, and left the client with all the bills?  These things happen far more frequently than one would think.  Attorney has probably worked on some of the most difficult family law issues, whether it was in San Diego, Sacramento, Roseville, Solano county or here in Butte.

When these difficult cases are worked on, most people do not exactly expect to prevail--for some reason?  Maybe because they have been steamrolled for so long, they have basically almost given up hope.

It is these types of cases that attorney usually can get results on, in part because it is interesting, and also because attorney is used to having to put up with so much nonsensical crap, to be quite frank?

Everything that you tell an attorney is usually confidential, save for a few exceptions, for example:   https://www.americanbar.org/groups/professional_responsibility/publications/model_rules_of_professional_conduct/rule_1_6_confidentiality_of_information/comment_on_rule_1_6/

The ridiculous and outrageous things attorney has seen over many years is nearly legendary...it's almost like there's a universe magnet that sends the worst factual cases to attorney?!! *smile-cringe* LOL but...then again, attorney was apparently cut out for these types of cases, because if that was not true, they would have stopped appearing long ago. (It should be noted, attorney herein has a degree in social welfare, not business, not accounting, not engineering,etc.)

                        ..............So if you have that type of case, you know who to call!

Some other cases included below 2015 - 2020......